The pilot Development Programme Fund received 278 applications from across the UK in 2019. We were delighted and humbled by this response and the thoughtfulness that went into the application making. Our decision making involved a three-stage process of internal assessment and long-listing, independent Artist Advisers’ assessments, and a final selection panel meeting including Artist Advisers and Trustees.
The 19 specialist programmes selected include six organisations brand new to us, as well as four programmes with longstanding funding relationships with Jerwood Arts. This reflects our ambition to balance long-term relationships, develop new ones and make room for outstanding new approaches.
The portfolio includes visual arts, sound art, new media and digital, and circus artistic development programmes at a significant level for the first time, fulfilling our aim to broaden our activity and disciplines and support organisations new to us. It features world-renowned organisations who are recognised leaders in their field alongside newer, ground-breaking companies pushing at the boundaries of artistic practice. This mix ensures we continue to have a hand in both supporting outstanding artists to develop their practice along more traditional lines, and supporting those who need and want to develop their practice outside the institutional mainstream.
We are particularly pleased with the number of programmes that meet very specific needs facing early-career artists, curators and producers in specific areas, such as bridging the gap between choreography and gallery-based performance, providing bespoke packages of support to artists with learning disabilities to make high quality work and bridge the gap with mainstream organisations, or enabling artists to experiment with working with the latest 360*sound technology at the highest level.
The selected organisations also share some common values and approaches – including realistic amounts of time for R&D processes, a commitment to artists’ care as well as their creative development, and a focus on cultivating conditions for excellence. The 128 beneficiaries will all receive significant direct financial and critical support, the majority with major showcasing and platforming opportunities for the new work they develop.
Throughout 2020 and 2021 we will be supporting the delivery of the programmes above. Many have been delayed or impacted due to the impact on Covid-19, but continue to provide exceptional opportunities for artists.